Nha Nhac Music – The Essence Of Vietnam Heritage Tours


The imperial city of Hue was once Vietnam’s capital, is nowadays known as the tourist center with two UNESCO recognized cultural heritages, including Vietnamese court music, which was registered as the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity (2003).

Origin of Nha Nhac royal court music

Nha Nhac Dance

Nha Nhac Dance

Nha Nhac was also known as Hue royal court music is a special art-form of court music with an elegant accent and noble melody. It symbolizes the royalty of the everlasting prosperity of the dynasty. Thus, Nha Nhac was highly respected by Vietnamese monarchs. According to the history, Nha Nhac has come from the Ly dynasty (1010-1225), but it flourished, most notably in the Nguyen dynasty (1802-1945).

History and glory

Vietnamese royal music was formally established with the reign of the Nguyen Dynasty at the beginning of the 19th century. However, the original foundation of it began in the 17th century. According to that, the feudal dynasties continued to preserve and develop Nha Nhac. The fact that Nguyen dynasty music has inherited and developed royal court music, it can be understood that Nha Nhac is tightly regulated.

Imperial City Of Hue

Imperial City Of Hue

In 2003, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) recognized Hue royal court music as the intangible and oral heritage of mankind. On January 31, 2004, in Paris, the ceremony of welcoming the certificate was held. With this recognition, Vietnam was honored to introduce to the world a unique art that only a few countries have and keep up to today. In the 80s of the 20th century, Nha Nhac royal music began to receive attention from the Ministry of Culture and local authorities. In the 90s, Hue royal music entered the renaissance stage. Since then, this art-form has been introduced in many parts of the world.

Artistic validity

Hue court music contains the principles of structure and philosophy of Eastern. It is clear that Nha Nhac, a genre of Hue royal art, in which music with a rigid structure system has contributed to a number of important critiques in five areas:

  • The orchestra of instrument
  • The system of orchestral music without lyrics.
  • Music for singing and dancing.
  • Songs in different kinds of dance.
  • Songs are sung in form of ceremony.

Nha Nhac Court Music Performance

Nha Nhac Court Music Performance

The instrument is composed of 6 types of the orchestra so the method is also very rich. All kinds of orchestras, musical instruments, music pieces, sections … are performed by the best musicians, singers, and dancers of the country. Apart from caring for the development of songs, customs, and formalities, the construction of theaters for performing places is also paid much attention to. Thus, every stage of Nha Nhac is solemn, no mundane, and highly artistic.

Conservation and promotion

Before the recognition of Nha Nhac music as a cultural heritage, a training course had taught in September 1996 at the Hue College of Art with 15 students and classes had been very successful. The preservation and promotion of Hue royal court music were entrusted to the Hue Academy of Music and Hue Royal Opera House, together with researchers and enthusiastic artists.

Hue Royal Court Music On Huong River

Hue Royal Court Music On Huong River

Today, orchestra, composition, and dances of Nha Nhac can be used in different forms of performance on occasions such as Buddhist festival, diplomatic ceremonies, … Thus, Nha Nhac music has conditions and space much richer than ever before.

Another interesting thing in cultural tours in Vietnam when listening to court music is that between performances, visitors can also taste the fresh fruit of Hue and enjoy the royal tea. A show usually does not last long, only about 30-40 minutes which is enough to introduce visitors to the sweet melody of Nha Nhac music. The price for a program of listening to music and enjoy royal tea is very reasonable, just from 70,000 to 120,000 VND per person.

Nha Nhac royal court music is one of the invaluable fortunes of Vietnam heritage tours. That value was resilient and honored by humanity. In the abundant musical genres that have been developed in Vietnam, only Nha Nhac has the national level.


Related Post